Roadcase Royale – Get Loud
You might see this title and expect some boisterous track, but you’d be wrong. Slinkiness is the order of the day on Roadcase Royale’s debut single “Get Loud” and the two names behind this project, vocalist Liv Warfield and guitarist Nancy Wilson, help guide this track with their talents and veteran leadership. The material is outstanding and poises this six piece to garner some genuine mainstream attention despite the fact that, for Wilson, this is a side project intended in no way to replace Heart as a priority. The truth is, however, that Roadcase Royale doesn’t sound anything like a side project or dalliance. From the first notes on, “Get Loud” sounds like the first confident stride of a band intent on being noticed and building from there. Each of the six musicians involved with this performance seem on the same page and everything purrs with the inventiveness we expect from performers like Warfield and Wilson.
Wilson and lead guitarist Ryan Waters take us into the song with some nifty dual guitar work. The guitars recede when we launch into the first verse and bassist Dan Rothchild and drummer Ben Smith lay down a flexible, but ultra steady, groove for the guitars and vocalist alike to work over. It has an airy bounce, never too exaggerated, and supports everything quite well. The songwriting and playing deals with the track’s turnarounds and transitions extraordinarily well. No instrument is ever dominant, the production achieves an unshakeable balance, and there isn’t even a hint of the self-indulgence that defines so many veteran acts. Even in 2017, Nancy Wilson and her collaborators have no need to show off. They want to write and record fantastic songs and “Get Loud” fits the bill on every level. There’s some genuine musical bite in the arrangement, melodic strengths, just the right running time, and a muscular rhythm section that plays at all the perfect points.
The vocals from Liv Warfield are worth the price of purchase alone. She has a versatile instrument capable of exploring multiple emotional layers while still maintaining its concentration on the task at hand. Nothing sounds out of place or laid on too thick. Instead, she’s enormously attentive to the backing track and matches her vocal movements to what the band is doing rather than pitting herself against the arrangement. This is an exceptional attribute in any singer and not nearly common enough. The lead-in to the chorus and the chorus itself are particular high points for her voice and she invests the lyrics with considerable style. In regards to the lyrical content, it’s ideally suited for the song. This has some political meaning, obviously, in light of recent history and where the song has received its initial public airings, but the lyrics deliver an essentially humanist message that has perennial relevance. It’s these qualities that make Roadcase Royale’s debut one of the best singles in recent memory. “Get Loud” may never get too loud, but the spirit in the music is irrepressible.